There was a time right about when I became a personal trainer that I was curious about supplementation, and protein powders, and macro nutrient breakdown… blah blah blah. So I tried to learn from experience and taylor my nutrition to incorporate pre-workout supplementation, post-workout supplementation, high protein, low carb, morning vitamins, evening vitamins, carb inhibitors, green tea extracts… you get the drift.
What I found is that none of it really mattered. Not for my goals anyway, which are very simple and do not include fitness competitions or workout DVD’s (do they still make those?).
So at some point all your options collectively do become overkill, but how are you suppose to know what’s acceptable and appropriate, and what’s going over the top? Well, by investigating.
There are certain concepts that will always hold true and if you are being true to yourself you will honor these above all else:
- Get plenty of sleep, 7+ hours
- Drink plenty of water +60oz.
- Eat whole foods – no wrapper, no box, no crap
- Eat your veggies – 6 servings/day makes me happy
- Cut out the sugar, the sweet stuff, the extras
- Exercise 4-6x/week – breaking a sweat!
From here you can tweak your approach and find a regimen that suits you… or you can stay here and know that you are treating your body very well (kudos to you).
A couple of things that I have found to serve me very well include probiotics, Magnesium, and protein powder. I use a vegan protein powder because, well, you know how I feel about dairy. And that’s it.
This is not to say that I am opposed to electrolyte supplementation for workouts, or BCAAs, or anything else along these lines, but they just have not found a place in my routine and I am very OK with this. Like I said, I’m an idealist. I like to keep it simple and keep my focus on actual food. Good food on a good schedule with plenty of hydration and rest to compliment it.
Nail the basics and then you can experiment if you want. But I guarantee if you nail the basics you’ll feel like a million bucks. Everything else can quickly become overkill.